If you're like me then one of the things you find most frustrating in life are those times when you go out of your way to help someone, be it major or minor, and receive in the end nothing for your good deed. No, I am not talking about rewards but simple gratitude; or as we more commonly call it "thankfulness." Why is it that so many people seem to not understand the importance of being thankful? Surely they have been on the receiving end of an ungrateful person's callousness. Shouldn't that make them more aware of their own treatment of others kindness?
The Bible talks about a time when people will become "unthankful, unholy" and "without natural affection" (1 Tim. 3:2) and it seems that this prophecy is clearly coming true in our own time. But is it inevitable or can we do something about it? Well, as far as the whole of humanity is concerned there is not much we can do. But as far as individuals we can do a lot.
Aesop, the fabulist of antiquity told the story of Androcles the slave. In this fable Androcles had run away from his master. On his flight to safety he ran across a great lion lying in a field moaning in apparent pain. Androcles quickly ran away but noticed that the lion did not stir. Realizing that the king of beast must be truly injured he decided to go back to take a closer look. And, as he approached, the lion held up a bloody and swollen front paw to the amazed man.